Uber is to invest over $100 million in a new joint venture with SK Telecom (SKT) plus another $50 million in T Map Mobility – SKT’s newly-independent mobility business.
The new joint venture is designed to create opportunities in the taxi-hailing market in Korea as well as explore future mobility services.
A statement says that the joint venture will promote e-hailing in Korea by combining T Map Mobility’s network of drivers and mapping technology with Uber’s ride-hailing technology and global operations expertise.
The joint venture is expected to begin operations, and Uber is expected to invest in T Map Mobility, in the first half of 2021.
“Korea was one of Uber’s first international markets, and we are committed to fully realising its potential. Through our strong partnership with SKT, we will expand access to ride-hailing services in the country, and bring better service to riders and drivers. We look forward to serving the South Korean market in the years ahead,” said Nelson Chai, Chief Financial Officer of Uber.
“Together with Uber, the world’s top mobility platform company, we will turn customer’s time and money spent on mobility into time used for more valuable purposes and realize greater safety for all modes of transportation,” said Park Jung-ho, CEO of SKT. “To this end, we will work closely with companies with diverse capabilities to address current challenges in transportation, and ultimately usher in a new era of future mobility technologies such as flying cars.”
Mobility has become an increasingly important area of SK Telecom’s operations, hence the decision to form a new company from it Mobility Business Unit. As it stands, this unit is responsible for services including T Map and T Map Taxi.